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  • January 23, 2020 1:43 PM | Anonymous

    The American College of Surgeons (ACS) signed a letter to the House Committees on Ways and Means and Education and Labor as they consider policy solutions to the issue of surprise medical bills. The letter highlights the medical community’s commitment to working with Congress to develop an equitable legislative solution to protect patients from surprise medical bills, while also facilitating a process to quickly, efficiently, and fairly resolve physician and health plan billing disputes. The ACS remains actively engaged as Congress looks toward addressing surprise medical billing before the end of May.

    For more information, contact Carrie Zlatos, ACS Senior Congressional Lobbyist, at czlatos@facs.org.

  • January 17, 2020 1:42 PM | Anonymous

    The American College of Surgeons (ACS) responded to a recently published Washington Post opinion piece describing a patient's experience with surprise medical billing, in which the patient had an upsetting interaction with the surgeon regarding treatment costs.

    As the patient was being prepared for an emergency appendectomy, she was told that she would be responsible for the surgeon's full fee because the provider was out of the patient's insurance network.

    The ACS letter to the editor, written by Executive Director David B. Hoyt, MD, FACS, was published January 17.

  • January 10, 2020 10:40 AM | Anonymous

    Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the 36th proposal of his 2020 State of the State Agenda - strengthening the oversight of physicians and other medical professionals to protect patients.

    The Governor is proposing a comprehensive set of reforms to provide the Department of Health's Office of Professional Medical Conduct with tools to investigate, discipline and monitor physicians, physician assistants and specialist assistants licensed in New York, providing greater transparency in physician discipline and reducing the length of misconduct investigations.

    According to the release, areas he will address include:

    • Making Investigations and Non-Disciplinary Actions Public
    • Eliminating Lifetime Licensure
    • Reform Public Health Law's Burdensome Provisions
    • Consumers Have Up-To-Date and Accessible Information about New York State Licensed Physicians

    "The first responsibility of any medical professional is do no harm, and when someone violates that oath they must be held appropriately accountable," Governor Cuomo said. "These sweeping proposals will help ensure patients have access to critical information they need to make informed decisions about their healthcare and give state health regulators more tools to investigate and penalize providers for dangerous, unethical or illegal behavior."

    > Read the full press release
  • January 08, 2020 11:22 AM | Anonymous

    The deadline for the Resident Travel Awards for the Leadership & Advocacy Summit has been extended from January 10th to Friday, January 17.

    The American College of Surgeons (ACS) is pleased to again offer a limited number of scholarships to Resident Members of the American College of Surgeons who are interested in attending the upcoming Leadership & Advocacy Summit, March 28–31, 2020, at the Renaissance Downtown Hotel in Washington, DC. The ninth annual Summit is a dual meeting that offers volunteer leaders and advocates specialized educational sessions focused on effective surgeon leadership, interactive advocacy training, and coordinated visits to Congressional offices

     The award will cover up to $500 in housing and transportation costs.

    Full details about the awards and how to apply can be found at the following link:.

    The deadline to apply is now Friday, January 17, 2020.

  • January 08, 2020 10:33 AM | Anonymous

    Today marks the start of the 2020 legislative session and right outside the NY Chapter ACS offices, there are about 300 people participating in an anti-vaccination demonstration growing in size. 

    The NYS Senate and Assembly is set to convene at noon today.

    Governor Andrew M. Cuomo will hold the 2020 State of the State Address  in the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany at 1:30 PM today. 

    "Last year we laid out the most aggressive agenda in modern political history and we got it done," Governor Cuomo said. "This year we'll build on that record of accomplishment and continue restoring confidence in government as a force for good. We're going to set the bar even higher, making progress happen for the people of this great state and sending a signal to a weary country to follow New York as we lead the way upwards."

    Here is a list of his proposals that he has pre-released that will impact healthcare. What we didn't see in his original list is the legalization of marijuana, but do anticipate him introducing something.

     STATE BUDGET

    New York’s budget gap for the coming year stands at $6.1 billion. It’s the largest state budget gap since the Great Recession, mostly attributed to $4 billion in Medicaid overspending. 

    New York’s Medicaid program covers over 6 million residents and is projected to reach $74.5 billion in 2019, in total costs split between the federal government, state and local governments.

    In 2019, the Cuomo administration delayed  payments into April, thereby transferring the issue into the 2020 state budget.

    Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration has cited a trio of issues facing Medicaid spending including: An increase in the minimum wage, a phase out of federal funding and an aging population that has seen more people enroll in long-term care.

    On December 31, 209 - the NYS Department of Health released a proposal in the NYS Register to cut Medicaid payments by 1%. It’s expected to save $124 million in "gross Medicaid expenditures" in the final quarter of the current fiscal year, and $496 million in each subsequent year, according to the notice.

    The across-the-board rate cut would impact providers such as hospitals, nursing homes, doctors and others who provide care through the state’s Medicaid program, which serves roughly 6 million New Yorkers, most of whom are children, seniors or individuals with disabilities.

    The Medical State Society of New York and several organizations including the New York Chapter ACS have signed onto a joint letter calling on the Governor to reconsider across the board payment reduction, other Medicaid reductions and protect this critical program to our State’s most vulnerable residents, the workers who care for them and the providers who bear the responsibility. 

    ASSEMBLY LEADERSHIP CHANGES

    Assemblyman Brian Kolb has officially resigned as minority leader, following a drunk driving arrest on New Year’s Eve just days after writing an op-ed against drinking and driving. Not only that He was apparently twice the legal limit when he crashed and tried to blame his wife for the crash.

    The new Assembly minority leader is William Barclay -  a nine-term legislator, who was named deputy minority leader in 2012 and served in that role in 2018.  Barclay currently serves as the top Republican on the Ways and Means Committee, which is responsible for all business that pertains to the state budget.  He lives halfway between Syracuse and Watertown.

     NY CHAPTER ACS UPCOMING ADVOCACY EVENTS
    • The New York Chapter will participate in a press conference on 1/13/2020 to help launch the Statewide Campaign to Ban Flavored Tobacco. 
    • Mark your calendars for New York Chapter ACS PAC Reception is May 4th and Annual Advocacy Day: Tuesday, May 5, 2020!
  • January 07, 2020 4:05 PM | Anonymous

    The 2020 ACS/Pfizer Surgical Volunteerism and Humanitarian Awards nominations process is open through February 15, 2020.

    There are five award categories for which an individual can be nominated: humanitarian, domestic volunteerism, international volunteerism, military volunteerism, and resident volunteerism.

    The awardees will be announced in September and recognized at the ACS Clinical Congress 2020 in Chicago, IL.

    These awards recognize ACS Fellows and members whose altruism, vision, leadership, and dedication provide models to emulate and whose contributions have made a lasting difference.

    To learn more about the nomination process visit www.facs.org/ogb/award-winners/nominations.

  • December 26, 2019 10:14 AM | Anonymous

    On December 26th, the Governor vetoed S5294-A/A7431-B, a piece of legislation that would have authorized three classes of electric assist bicycles and electric scooters to operate in New York State, subject to local regulation.

    His veto message said the bill overwhelmingly passed by lawmakers this year didn't include enough safety measures, such as a helmet requirement. “Failure to include these basic measures renders this legislation fatally flawed," he said. He also cited recent accidents including the November death of a 16-year-old boy in Elizabeth, N.J., who was struck by a tow truck while riding a rental scooter.

    In a tweet, the Governor said "There is no need for us to choose between legalizing e-bikes and safety, and I will propose a bill that does both on January 8."

    The NY Chapter ACS will be monitoring the new proposal in 2020.

  • December 21, 2019 11:07 AM | Anonymous

    The American College of Surgeons (ACS) 2020 Nominating Committee of the Fellows (NCF) and the Nominating Committee of the Board of Governors (NCBG) will be selecting nominees for leadership positions in the College as follows:

    Call for Nominations for Officers-Elect

    The 2020 NCF will select nominees for the three Officer-Elect positions of the ACS: President-Elect, First Vice-President-Elect, and Second Vice-President-Elect. The deadline for submitting nominations is February 21, 2020.

    Call for nominations for Board of Regents

    The 2020 NCBG will select nominees for four pending vacancies on the Board of Regents to be filled at Clinical Congress 2020. The deadline for submitting nominations is February 21, 2020.

     Full details regarding the submission process can be found on the ACS website.

  • December 13, 2019 2:39 PM | Anonymous

    Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced today that the 2020 State of the State Address will be held in the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany on January 8 at 1:30 PM.

    New Yorkers wishing to attend should visit the Governor's homepage to register between December 20th at 12:00 PM and December 30th at 5:00 PM.

  • December 11, 2019 1:55 PM | Anonymous

    The American College of Surgeons (ACS) is pleased to offer a limited number of scholarships to Resident Members of the American College of Surgeons who are interested in attending the upcoming Leadership & Advocacy Summit, March 28–31, 2020, at the Renaissance Downtown Hotel in Washington, DC. The ninth annual Summit is a dual meeting that offers volunteer leaders and advocates specialized educational sessions focused on effective surgeon leadership, interactive advocacy training, and coordinated visits to Congressional offices.

     The award will cover up to $500 in housing and transportation costs.

    Full details about the awards and how to apply can be found at the following link: https://www.facs.org/advocacy/participate/summit/resident-awards. The deadline to apply is Friday, January 10, 2020.

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